Aug 1, 2014
LEXINGTON, Ohio -- With four races left in the Verizon IndyCar Series season, championship points leader Helio Castroneves isn't sweating the details.
"I'm focused on bringing the car home as best I can and the championship will figure itself out," said Castroneves, who arrived for the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio with a 13-point lead over Team Penske teammate Will Power.
Ryan Hunter-Reay, the 2012 series champion and the reigning Indianapolis 500 winner, is third in the standings (69 points behind). Simon Pagenaud, a two-time winner this season, is 71 points out of the lead. Juan Pablo Montoya, the third Team Penske driver, is fifth in the standings.
Castroneves, a three-time Indianapolis 500 winner, is seeking his first series title. So is Power. The remaining schedule is split with two road courses (Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course and Sonoma Raceway) and two ovals (Milwaukee Mile and Auto Club Speedway). The Aug. 30 finale on the 2-mile track in Fontana, Calif., carries double points.
“Anything can happen," Castroneves said. "I don’t think anyone can afford to come in and say they need to be strategic or thinking about this or that. It’s 100 points so it’s like two more races. There is still a long way to go. We are taking the necessary risks."
New series on Velocity features Bohlander
Lauren Bohlander, wife of 2013 Indianapolis 500 winner Tony Kanaan and the Verizon IndyCar Series' at-track video host, is a co-host of "Garage Squad" -- a car-oriented series that debuted Aug. 1 on Velocity -- along with racing personality Bruno Massel.
Repeats of the premiere episode are at noon (ET) Aug. 2, 2 p.m. (ET) Aug. 3 and 8 and 11 p.m. (ET) Aug. 5.
"After years of working with the Verizon IndyCar Series and spending downtime working on project cars together with Tony, the opportunity to work on a project like 'Garage Squad' was an obvious fit," Bohlander said. "Getting to combine my own love of cars with the opportunity to help others turn their dream car projects into a reality is so fulfilling."
The show focuses on dream car restoration projects, featuring automobiles that collect dust in garages because their owners lack the necessary time, money or mechanical knowledge to jump start their cars back to life.
"What's really great about 'Garage Squad' is that it's all about resurrecting cars that people love and they learn a little bit in the process," Bohlander said. "We're taking ordinary folks with car projects at home and helping turn them back into their dream cars."
In the series premiere, "Garage Squad" tackled two iconic 1960s Fords that have been in the garage of the Flood family for decades. Flood family patriarch, Chris, was born in Ireland before coming to the United States in the 1960s, and was drafted to serve in the Vietnam War. To Flood, his 1963 Ford Galaxie is a symbol of America that he loves, though it needs a bumper-to-bumper overhaul.
Meanwhile, Flood's son, Greg, has also struggled with completing the restoration of a 1966 Ford Mustang since the day smoke billowed from the steering wheel, which came off in his hands as he drove it. With two iconic cars disassembled and on blocks, the "Garage Squad" goes to work.
"I've been on the set with Lauren quite a bit over the past few months and have actually been lucky enough to get a sneak preview of the show," Kanaan said. " 'Garage Squad' is interesting because it gets cool cars back on the road while, at the same time, fulfilling the dreams of their owners who maybe didn't have the means to finish the project. I'm looking forward to Velocity being able to share those experiences with everyone"
Verizon Wireless supplements network capabilities
Verizon Wireless has installed four temporary cell sites called COWs (Cell On Wheels) to provide additional network calling capacity in Central Ohio in anticipation of the crowds for the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio, the Ohio State Fair and Dublin Irish Festival.
Each COW is a fully functional, generator-powered cell site, which has the same call capacity as a freestanding cell site. The deployed COWs support voice coverage and 4G LTE data, as well as XLTE.
Rick Pearson of Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing won the 10th anniversary Pilot Flying J Truck Driver Challenge. Jake Klomp of Target Chip Ganassi Racing was second. The competition was started to showcase and spotlight the abilities of professional transport drivers. They demonstrate their driving abilities through a series of chicanes as well as knowledge of Department of Transportation regulations. ... Jack Hawksworth's father, Andrew, is taking in the action at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. It's his first visit to a Verizon IndyCar Series event in the U.S. ... RC Enerson won the first race of the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda tripleheader at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.